My friend sent me this article and I was so aggravated while reading it that I had to write this note. I realize that a lot of folks are going to think “wow, Rachael is taking this Twilight stuff a WEE bit too seriously” but it’s not about “Twilight” perse; it’s about all the books like this that come under attack (I’m looking at you Harry Potter).
I encourage you to read as much of the article below as you can stomach before reading what I have to say but here are my problems with this Sue Bohlin person’s assertions about this series of novels:
1. She clearly did not even read the books. I HATE that. I cannot stand it when someone doesn’t even take the time to read a book but will do everything they can to demonize the author and the novel. READ THE DAMN BOOK before you go spouting off erroneous perspectives and save us all the blather.
2. It’s now wrong to have a dream? Really? Because she dreamed about the characters prior to writing the novel, she is being talked to by the devil? If that’s the case, should we all start really monitoring our dreams that closely? And what happens when I have a dream where my teeth fall out? Plenty of authors write books based on dreams they’ve had. Heck, I’ve started books based on a dream. Am I evil? Are the characters evil? <ENTER PARANOIA-LAND>
3. In the part about “Vampires, Blood, and Salvation” this woman says that the Cullens’ – and other vampires’ powers – did not come from God. What? Why not? They had the proclivity for these powers long before they became vampires and many were chosen to be vampires because of those powers (Alice, Jasper, etc.) Again I say: READ THE FRIGGIN’ BOOK FIRST. Unless she’s trying to say they were evil people to begin with? So confused. And aggravated.
4. Same section, she says people “long for supernatural powers.” Duh. Hello Disney, Stan Lee, ComiCon attendees. Is she serious? Raise your hand if you would NOT like to fly if that super power were available…I’m waiting…thought so.
5. Her “Probe colleague” says you can’t turn vampires into whatever you want – they are inherently evil. Excuse me? Hello fictional character invented by an author originally. Isn’t that what literary freedom is all about? She’s clearly embraced the concept with this article. She’s making crap up about a book she never read…I’m gonna call that blatant literary freedom.
6. Using fringe folks who clearly have some sort of mental impairment and imagine that they must have access to something outside of societal norms and mores to survive is not an acceptable comparison to make with tweens and teens reading a fantasy novel. Not OK.
7. Saying that the vampires can’t be “good” is just dumb. Do we not all have choices in life? Can we not chose to do good? Can we not have horrible things happen to us and rather than blame those things for our bad choices and bad behaviors – going the easy route – chose to make good choices and do the right thing? I think so – I hope so…if not, we’re in bigger trouble than even this woman realizes.
8. Believe it or not, I’m gonna agree with her on the dysfunctional relationship thing. Let’s face it…Bella and Edward’s relationship isn’t exactly 100% healthy…but it’s teenagers…and they are required to make dumb relationship choices. It’s a right of passage. But again I say, if my Pineapple is caught with a boy in her room (sparkly or otherwise) when she’s a teen – or at any age, she’s in deep caca. And if she goes all zombie-esque over a breakup, then we’ll deal with it; but hopefully I will have raised her to be strong and stand on her own two feet. Plus, the chances of her actually dating a vampire are…zilch.
9. Regarding the whole “eternal life” thing, NONE of the Cullens actually wanted to be changed. They were all dying. Literally on the verge of death. Most people on their death beds, if given a chance to get up and move around again, would feel that their lives had been “saved” just like Edward says. Don’t believe me? March on over to the ER and wait for someone to get hit with a defibrillator and then ask them if they’d rather the doc hadn’t bothered. And, Bella believes that they have souls. And I do, too. So there.
10. In the “Emotional Pornography” section, she quotes someone as saying that the only reason Edward will not have sex with Bella is because he literally can’t for fear of killing her. Um…NO that is not the only reason why. <INSERT MAJOR GRUMBLE AND ANOTHER ROUND OF ‘FOR THE LOVE READ A STINKIN’ BOOK’> Edward doesn’t want to have sex with Bella until they are married because he wants to protect her virtue. For. The. Love.
11. Again with the emotional pornography – I’ve read a LOT of books for teens given that I’d like to write one. I have to say in all of the books I have read, there is some sort of “emotional/sexual” tension. It’s interesting to teenagers because it is ACCURATE. You can’t walk around with that many hormones and NOT have some sort of sexual/emotional tension happening. Not to mention the fact that by far, these books are much more tame than a lot of the others I’ve read that are aimed at teen girls…Gossip Girl anyone? Pretty Little Liars? Vampire Diaries? Hello!!!!
I’m done. I can rant no longer. I swear, though…I really, truly wish some folks would take a few moments to read the books they are planning to criticize and consider the individuals who HAVE taken the time to read them. Then they might pause to recognize that maybe all of them aren’t drooling morons incapable of making a rational decision for themselves or standing up for what they see as a gross misinterpretation of a fantasy fiction piece of writing.
Oh yeah…and a lot of us are Christians.
P.S. Please share YOUR thoughts! Even if you disagree – I don’t mind a dialogue and this post isn’t written with the intention of offending anyone but rather to share my thoughts on the subject. Join the conversation! 🙂